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“Very good but a tad overpriced”

Risto's Place Food & Spirits
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Ranked #2 of 166 Restaurants in Statesville
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$9 - US$27
Cuisines: American
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Description: Risto's Place has the feel of fine dining in the neighborhood. Sheryl and Risto Toukola purchased the restaurant in 1999 and operated it as Mayo's Ristorante. In 2007, Risto accidentally lost his life and Sheryl recently renamed the restaurant "Risto's Place" in his honor. Risto left his mark on Sheryl's life and he continues to be with her in the form of a yellow butterfly. Sounds crazy? It's not. On a warm winter day in January 2008, Sheryl was having lunch at an outside café when a yellow butterfly landed on the railing beside her. It just sat there while she ate. Who's ever heard of a butterfly in January? Since then, the yellow butterfly continued to appear to her many times in many places. When Sheryl's granddaughter sees a yellow butterfly, she shouts with joy, There's Papa Risto!" This phenomenon is the impetus that led to the creation of the butterfly in Risto's Place logo, and the reason Sheryl wears a butterfly necklace every day. Corny, maybe, but true. It is said that every restaurant must have a specialty. Sheryl's specialty is fresh food, made from scratch with produce and fruits from the local farmers' market. Herbs are home-grown, desserts homemade daily, soups and sauces simmer long hours on the stove, not heated from a can. Sheryl serves only fresh fish caught in the wild in American waters. Sausages, salamis and cheeses are still sent to Sheryl from specialty stores in her hometown of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Go Steelers!) Coffee, however, is shipped in from her favorite roastery in Seattle, Washington. She is all about "Buy American". Her dishes are from an American manufacturer as is her silverware and glassware. She gets canned tomatoes from a California grower and cannery. She purchases every item she can American- made. Prosciutto, however, would not be the same unless it was aged in Italy. Many of Risto's Place customers are travelers on their way to Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head, Savannah, Charleston, Atlanta and Florida. They seek refuge from the fast-food and chain options available just off interstates 40 and 77. Risto's is just one mile from either of these exits. It is amazing that most of those who dine at Risto's going, also time their drive to dine at Risto's when returning. Risto's Place also offers a complete lounge menu for those seeking a less than a full meal, although full meals may be ordered in the lounge. Complete bar and wine services are available and live entertainment can be enjoyed on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and some Saturdays. Open Mic is held every Tuesday at 7:30pm. Solo acts perform on Thursdays at 7:30pm and Bands play on Fridays at 8:00pm. The lounge atmosphere is akin to the television bar affectionately known as "Cheers". Risto's Place lounge and dining room are located at 123 North Center Street, Statesville, North Carolina and are open Tuesday through Saturday beginning at 5:00 pm. Dress code is casual. Lunch is available Tuesday through Friday from 11:30 am until 2:00 pm. Reservations are not required, but are recommended so that staffing is adequate for the crowd. 704-872-5557.
Reviewed 21 June 2014

Service was excellent and food was very good. We definitely paid for it though! We enjoy a good meal and heard all sauces are made in house, etc., so we thought we give it a try. Would definitely go back when we travel that direction.

2  Thank gjaaa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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160 - 164 of 186 reviews

Reviewed 6 June 2014

I was visiting an old friend in Statesville and wanted to go out for a really nice meal. I used TripAdvisor to find this place and was pleased to find that the reviews were spot on. We had a lovely dinning experience from start to finish. We started off with martinis and a bruschetta appetizer. The drinks were chilled just right and had wonderful flavors. The bruschetta was perfect, not too crunchy but not too soft either. We both ordered the Chicken Parmesan which was again perfectly cooked, not too breaded and had a good heap of flavorful sauce. We ordered two desserts to share, the German chocolate cake and the Tiramisu along with cups of coffee. So decadent and lovely. This is an interesting restaurant as it has a split personality one side, where we were, was more formal and the other side has an informal bar with a bar menu and outside seating. The only complaint I had was that the formal tables (with low lighting) really needed a little tea light on the tables. All in all it was one of the most expensive (and totally worth it) meals I've had in a VERY long time. I went in planning to go all out and I'm glad I did. However you can totally have a wonderful meal here without breaking the bank and after having seen the bar menu I would go back there for a nice relaxing drink and bite to eat as well.

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3  Thank LadyZady
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 May 2014 via mobile

Good food, very friendly atmosphere and staff. Unique interior design. I had pink snapper special and it was one of the best pieces of fish I ever had. And Swiss chard the way it was cooked was a lovely surprise: healthy nutritious meal that is really hard to find nowadays. Was very impressed

4  Thank Dream_traveler88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 May 2014 via mobile

The service is friendly and competent. The food remarkably good. Salad with blue cheese is excellent. Eggplant Parmesan as good as I have ever had. Chicken BBQ pizza a touch sweet but solid. Orange cake dessert worth the calories. Recommended.

2  Thank jamesmorton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 May 2014

Statesville is one of my favourite downtown areas and the local businesses have done just an ASTOUNDING JOB in keeping this town viable in such a poor economy.
One of the leaders in this move is a fabulous little restaurant and bar called RISTO'S PLACE.
Off the main street you can choose a small, comfortable bar area, with live entertainment on the weekends, or, head into a connected, more formal dining room where you can still enjoy the music.
A family owned gem with sisters who are the serving staff and chef produce an enjoyable dining venue.
We lucked in on a Friday night to some absolutely exquisite Veal Picatta served on some perfectly-cooked heavenly spaghettini...almost fuccilli noodles. And the fresh veggies cooked perfectly al dente the best I have had. The Mediterranean Pizza had tasty thin crust with some savory anchovies and robust black olives.
I wish I had had room for some of their home-made desserts!!!!

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2  Thank Doug W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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